Digital Trust & Security Seminar with Guest Speaker Professor Ajitha Rajan

Time: 12:45 – 14:00

Venue: Online session

Prof. Ajitha Rajan, School of Informatics, University of Edinburgh

Event Title:  Challenges in Automated Software Testing: GPUs and Smart Contracts

Event Overview: In the first part of the session, Ajitha will present testing challenges for Graphics Processing Units (GPUs). GPUs are massively parallel processors offering performance acceleration and energy efficiency unmatched by current processors (CPUs) in computers. These advantages along with recent advances in the programmability of GPUs have made them attractive for general-purpose computations. Despite the advances in programmability, GPU kernels are hard to code and analyse due to the high complexity of memory sharing patterns, striding patterns for memory accesses, implicit synchronisation, and combinatorial explosion of thread interleavings. Ajitha's team propose a testing technique for OpenCL kernels that combines mutation-based fuzzing and selective SMT solving with the goal of being fast, effective and scalable.

In the second part of the session, Ajitha will present automated test input generation techniques for smart contracts in the Ethereum blockchain. A blockchain is a distributed ledger that stores a growing list of unmodifiable records called blocks. Executing, verifying and enforcing credible transactions on blockchains is done using smart contracts. Ajitha will introduce a variety of test input generation techniques - fuzzing-based and genetic algorithms and present their effectiveness in revealing vulnerabilities in smart contracts.

Event Schedule:

12:45 - Registration 

13:00 - Welcome and introduction

13:10 - Guest speaker Professor Ajitha Rajan

13:50 - Q&A 

14:00 - Event close 

Speaker Bio: Ajitha’s research is in the field of software engineering and strives to address challenges in software validation and verification through the use of formal methods. Ajitha is especially interested in defining quality metrics for software and in coverage metrics for code, design, and requirements - not necessarily in that order. Her most recent research focuses on executing test cases on GPUs and working on cost models for incremental software and defining adequacy metrics for regression testing.